July 7th & 8th 2018
Alliance PD Training, Alliance OH
BCM Enhanced Light Weight 16” Upper, MLOK rail & Surefire Scout 600 Furry. Aero lower with BCM buttstock Kit & Geissley G2S trigger. LaRue 1.93” RECCE Mount & Steiner PX4i. M193 from Prvi Partisan.
G19 w/Hailey Strategic Skimmer trigger & TruGlow fiber trinium sights. 115 grain from Aguila.
Ballistic Helmet, (I borrowed a ballistic vest from Chappy) & RCS pistol mag & AR mag pouch. RCS IWB holster.
When I learned that Forge Tactical was hosting a “Individual CQB” class for $300, and was in a “live fire” shoot house; I signed up immediately!
Prior to this course, I have only been trained on a flat range. I was eager to take those skills into a dynamic environment that challenged my problem solving and gun-fighting skills. I was not disappointed at all by this experience!
TD1 started at 8am and John “Chappy” Chapman began with a verbal introduction to Individual CQB. He stressed that Individual CQB should be considered a “last resort” option; without backup, your exposing yourself entirely in certain situations. Chappy then assigned a squad and number to each person A1 thru A12, and B1 thru B12 (Alpha & Bravo squads); these would be our call signs during the class.
After the initial review, we discussed & Chappy demoed how to approach and enter doors. We then practiced identifying shapes and how to maneuver thru them on the flat range.
After getting enough reps on working the shapes, we went back to the classroom to discuss what to do after entering the room. I’m not going to list the steps/techniques discussed; however if you have seen the Panteo Pat Rogers “Intro to the shoot house” video; he covers a lot of these concepts but this was more strategic for a single assaulter.
We then got our weapons and dry fired opening doors, clearing the thresholds and clearing rooms in the shoot house. By the end of the day we were able to conduct our first live fire drill.
For the live fire portions, we wore armor vests & helmets, and got to watch our squad put into practice what we had learned that day from the catwalk above the shoot house. I was part of Bravo squad and John “Doc” Spears would assist us thru the shoot house. Upon your “turn”, Doc would meet you at the corner of the shoot house and walk you thru the stages of “making ready” with your gear, secondary & primary weapons. The steps of making ready can also be found in Panteo’s Pat Rogers videos.
After walking towards the door to the shoot house, Doc would tell us to take a deep breath and the fight had begun! Opening that first door, and clearing the innitial threshold is an experience I’ll never forget. Even though I knew where the targets were from watching my teammates work the shoot house, the experience made me forget several marksmanship basics. As I opened the door, there was a target at 12:00 about 10-yards, and I put my first shot dot above the 8” circle (counting on the offset to land within the circle). On my follow up shot, I instinctively placed the dot in the middle of the circle. The result was 2-shots in the circle, but about 2.5” high and 2.5” low of Center. Not a very good group!
I then entered the room, and saw a target to 3:00 at 3-yards, I forgot to disengage the safety and then made the same Point-of-Aim (PoA) mistakes again.
At this point Doc provided feedback on the innitial entry, and asked how I wanted to clear the room. After securing the room, we discussed marksmanship on the targets and how to improve.
TD2 began at 9am and we picked up where we had a brief recap of the previous day; with an emphasis on “Slowing down!”. Not just in entering the room, but also in our shooting. We quickly went to the catwalk and began our second assault on the shoot house. Bravo was now with Chappy and he did the “Make ready” and provided feedback after the entry and after securing the room.
We conducted another 2 runs into the shoot house that day, each run would progressively get more challenging. At this point we could no longer watch the assulter before us, therefore it was a completely new experience! The 2nd run required all brain shots, the 3rd had targets that were either armed persons or unknowns and you would have to process those based on the situations. I accidentally shot an unknown in the head twice :-(
I really enjoyed and learned a ton about room clearing though we only conducting (4) live fire exercises into the shoot house. I probably shot about 50-rounds of Rifle, and 8-rounds of pistol over the weekend.
I will definitely take a 4-day class next year “small team CQB” to continue to build on what I have learned. Chappy, Doc and the APD team are awesome to train with.
Let me know if you have any questions!